Council of Europe: Discrimination of Jews, LGBT, Roma and other minorities rising in Hungary
Discrimination against Jews, LGBT people, the Roma and other minorities is increasing in Hungary. That is the finding of the latest report from the Council of Europe, the organization that supervises human rights protections in Europe.
The Council of Europe has called on the Hungarian authorities to combat racially motivated violence and take other steps to protect vulnerable persons. The report covers a broad range of human rights topics.
The recommendations have been published at a time when, according to many studies, poverty is rising in Hungary and Prime Minister Viktor Orbán faces charges of weakening democratic standards, according to the Associated Press. Nils Muižnieks, Human Rights Commissioner at the Council of Europe, visited Hungary at the beginning of July.
In his 44-page report he states that "in recent years an overall deterioration of the climate with respect to tolerance" has occurred. The most visible manifestations of intolerance are in people's behavior toward Roma.
The Hungarian Government did not immediately comment on the Council of Europe report. In the past, however, the Government has sharply objected to similar criticism.
The report lists concrete cases of violence committed against Romani inhabitants and also mentions the rise in the ultra-right Jobbik movement and other, similar groups that have held various marches intended to "awaken fear in Romani villages". "The Commissioner is deeply disturbed by the extensive presence of extremist and racist movements and organizations in Hungary and by the extremism present in the political environment," the report reads.
The Czech Republic has also been criticized several times over hate campaigns against Romani people. Earlier this year Commissioner Muižnieks expressed concern at the regular anti-Romani marches taking place there.
The segregation of Romani children also remains a serious problem. The Commissioner has said the Czech authorities need to send the consistent signal that they will not tolerate any manifestations of hatred or hate crimes.
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